Whit: DIY Braided Racerback Tank

I love big comfy t-shirts and I’ve always wanted to be the girl that can rock her boo’s big tee with a skirt or socks or something real nice like. But when your hubs is 6’5″, and you got a donk, this look is not the fantasy we’d hoped for. However recently I’ve been eyeing a Coors Light tee my hubs owns, and said to myself, “Self, we need to turn this into a racerback or something fancy like whoa.”

Naturally I turned to Pinterest for a Racerback DIY tutorial, as I have cut many a shirts myself, and many a shirts done cropped too short and boxy.

I liked the PINS I found, but reallllly wanted something a little more Brandy Melville-esque so I moved on to YouTube and found this gem for a braided racerback from the Sorry Girls. (I should add here that I have an obsession with braids as evidenced by many a pins and weekly hairstyles of my own.)

I will say that this style is a little more tricky than cutting up some tanks, but well worth it if you can manage a sloppy stitch like myself.

  • Cut off the sleeves right about 2 to 3 inches below the armpit seam
  • Layer for first sleeve over the other arm to match up your cut outs
  • You could easily stop here and roll in my hood. Cut off sleeves + God’s Brew as they call it.
  • Cut off the collar (my mistake here, I would cut it about an inch below not right at the collar seam)
  • Flip the tank over, and cut straight across about 3 inches down, or right at the natural arc of your racerback (you will re-attach it!)

  • Cut 3 even pieces from the top of the tank (where you just cut across) down as far as you’d like to go (as you can see I am blonde and did not calculate right so we have a 4 string braid)
  • Pull on each piece to give it some bounce and length
  • Braid away!

  • Add a little stitch to the top of your braid to keep it secure
  • Take the excess fabric of the top of the tank, fold it over, and stitch your braid at the center
  • Try it on and figure out how long you’d like it
  • I cut diagonally across on purpose for a little drape
  • Remember you can ALWAYS cut off more inches, it’s difficult to add length back

  • Add a piece of lace at the top of your braid for flare (entirely optional)

  • Check out your pythons in the new tank of course

In the end I do not think Tim Gunn will be calling me anytime soon to join Project Runway, however I am all Sassy molasse-y with my new tank and that’s all that matters.

x to the ohhh


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  1. Sarabell on August 16, 2012 at 3:24 pm

    Aw, what a cool way to keep your love’s shirt around! =]

  2. Casey on August 16, 2012 at 3:28 pm

    Cute! Fun idea =)

  3. Melissa on August 16, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    This girl is hilarious!!! Where is a link to her blog?

    • Whit on August 17, 2012 at 2:12 am

      Thanks Melissa that really means a lot! You can find me on a daily basis as a beezy contributor of a new blog here: http://www.busybodyfit.com/


  4. Patty on August 16, 2012 at 5:00 pm

    Hi Gina – I’m a long time reader of your site and I <3 Meg's fashion posts. I'm not sure that Whit's posts really fit with your site, quite honestly. I would never, ever consider wearing this particular item (or any others in previous Whit posts). I find that the fashion statements Whit chooses to display here to not connect with my image of a fitnessista. I'm a little concerned about a bunch of commentors thinking this is intentionally hurtful or snarky or something to that effect – but this is intended as reader feedback. I did my best to keep it polite, so I'd appreciate if commentors to follow would too!

    • Christine on August 17, 2012 at 7:19 am

      I agree.

    • grace on August 17, 2012 at 11:52 am

      I concur. I don’t think that these posts really fit in with the rest of your content. (That is not to say that I think these posts are bad.)

      • Beverly Aragon on August 17, 2012 at 12:05 pm

        Gina, I agree as well. I would love to see YOU on the fashion page!
        I love Meg and her posts to pieces, but often wonder why she doesn’t do these fun things on her own blogs–which I follow because I really enjoy them.
        I haven’t been a fan of Whit’s posts, only because I’m not able to relate to her fashion sense at all. I certainly don’t wish to come across as a hater because it’s obvious that Whit’s an awesome girl and lot of fun…her style’s just not for me and I don’t think it really resonates with your fitnessista flair either.

        • Fitnessista on August 17, 2012 at 1:33 pm

          thank you for your awesome feedback, beverly- i appreciate hearing what you want to see over here. i definitely love crashing the fashion page party when i have something to say, but i don’t like to see it be stale when i wear only workout clothes for two weeks.

          i hired meg to write on my fashion page because i feel like her style is very different from my own and i love the way she creates outfits with a mix of thrift and mall finds. whit is also a good friend of mine and offered to write some fashion posts as well, which is awesome because she has a very unique style and personality. the goal is to make the fashion page diverse and showcasing different styles and ideas, because everyone is different.

          thank you again for your feedback and please let me know if you have ideas on anything you’d like to see, or improvements i can make.

      • Fitnessista on August 17, 2012 at 1:33 pm

        thank you for chiming in, grace- i appreciate everyone’s polite feedback

    • Whit on August 17, 2012 at 12:29 pm

      Hey all! I appreciate your feedback. That’s the thing about fashion and style, there’s no one size fits all in anyway. How boring would that be if we all wore the same clothes and had the same opinions on life and style.

      I have been honored that Gina has allowed me to post here and if there are any suggestions you have in terms of content you’d love to read I am ALL ears. Need a new DIY lesson? Hair lesson? I think the whole point of the fashion page is to show different tastes, styles and trends because we are all so vastly different. Open to suggestions and appreciate your kind replies.

      Thank you for being kind in your disapproval of me as well. It’s all good, win some lose some!


      • Beverly Aragon on August 17, 2012 at 2:02 pm

        Hi Whit, I appreciate your sweet reply! You and Gina are both right–when it comes to fashion, no one size fits all, and I fully understand that Gina wants to showcase a variety of styles on the fashion page.
        I really enjoyed the recent posts where Gina shared her latest fashion finds and Meg dished about her winter clothing faves. Maybe you could do a similar post with your spin on fall fashion? Thanks! πŸ™‚

    • Fitnessista on August 17, 2012 at 1:44 pm

      hi patty,
      thank you so much for your polite feedback- i really appreciate it. i’m always interested to hear what readers think of content and posts and take your words to heart. the idea is to eventually have the site become more of a community site (i’ll still be the sole contributor on the main page), with different styles and ideas, since everyone is different. i’m easing into it and playing around first to see how it goes, or if that’s how i want it to go, and figure it out from there.
      thank you again for your comment, for reading, and if you have any more ideas or feedback, please let me know via the comments or send me an email.

  5. Katie @ Talk Less, Say More on August 16, 2012 at 10:40 pm

    So cute! Definitely going to make one of these…someday. πŸ™‚

  6. Natalie @ freshlifefindings on August 16, 2012 at 11:01 pm

    LOVE this idea!! Its so fun and I love the braid and lace. I’m thinking this is the way to get rid of the shirt my husband keeps wearing with the holes under the arms- drives me crazy! πŸ˜‰

    • Fitnessista on August 16, 2012 at 11:11 pm

      when that happens over here, the pilot deploys or goes out of town for work and the shirts just disappear. i have no idea what happens to them haha

  7. Jacob on August 17, 2012 at 2:30 am

    First time commenter – I saw my girlfriend share this on Facebook – just had to comment on this post. Just love the idea of my “Fitnessista” girlfriend using my clothes for her workouts, a good break from all the overpriced gear she owns, though she does look fantastic πŸ™‚

    Thanks Whit – crafty.

    A Texan.

    • Whit on August 17, 2012 at 12:29 pm

      Thanks Jacob, bet your girlfriend is SMOKIN’ haute!!!

    • Fitnessista on August 17, 2012 at 1:36 pm

      i like this comment a lot πŸ™‚

  8. Amanda Lee on August 17, 2012 at 1:05 pm

    This is a great weekend/workout top option! Thanks Whit. I’m always afraid to cut t’s because I end up cutting them wrong so I appreciate all the pictures.

    Ps- (I get you) at 5’10 with a 6’4 husband it’s hard to wear his t’s outside the house… and not look overweight.. this is a great options for ones he can spare πŸ˜‰

  9. Brigid on August 17, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    I disagree with the above posters — I love the variety of the Fashion page now. Honestly I used to skip it, but the contrast between Whit and Meg (and Gina, too) is fun and inspirational. I especially love how Whit and Meg use second-hand items to create something unique, or at least instead of buying something new every time they want to update their wardrobes. It’s much more obtainable for us lower-income gals.

    I love that you posted this tutorial because I was planning to do one of these this weekend. My hubby has 70 lbs and nine inches on me (wow, that sounded dirty, ha), so one of his shirts should be perfect. You’re awesome, Whit!

    • Fitnessista on August 17, 2012 at 1:26 pm

      thank you- that’s what i love about the fashion page, too. the idea is to eventually have the blog become more of a community, and it would be boring if it was all the same.

  10. chrissy on August 18, 2012 at 1:53 pm

    yeah neither ginas/megs/whits everyday style is like mine but i like to creep around regardless;) i’m so not into thrifting or DYIing but it’s fun to see!

  11. Andrea on August 18, 2012 at 3:30 pm

    Hey Gina! I’ve been reading your blog for more than a year now, but I’m not much of a commenter, so I just nod in approval every morning while eating my breakfast cookie and reading your blog πŸ™‚ Keep up the good work!
    Anyhow, I discovered Whitney’s blog a while ago and loved her writing and her awesome outfits and I was so excited when I saw her first post on the fashion page! πŸ™‚ Thanks for a great DIY idea, Whit!

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